After 51 years in the game as player and manager there aren’t many things the surprise Neil Warnock.
Yet 16 months after taking a job he has long craved he is on the verge of achieving a promotion even he thought improbable.
“[it] is nothing short of a miracle”.
But magic was exactly what Cardiff owner Vincent Tan hoped Warnock would work when he signed him in October 2016.
Having seen the club through a litany of managerial comings and goings the Malaysian billionaire was seemingly unable to find the perfect pairing of club and boss.
That was until the Warnock put pen to paper.
And there began the story of Cardiff City’s rapid regeneration.
Well those chats are particularly easy right now because after 34 games Cardiff find themselves chasing automatic promotion, just six points off leaders Wolves.
Ask any bookie, fan or pundit for that matter at the start of the season and Cardiff would be unlikely to have featured in anyone’s list of promotion chasers.
But that is exactly where they find themselves with 12 games remaining.
But the thought of returning to the top flight is still not on the agenda at their Hensol training base according to Warnock.
And that is about as refreshing an attitude as you could get in a sport that bears heavy the burden of financial pressure all too often.
It’s part down to age, part due to having watched his wife battle serious illness, that the 69 year old’s perspective has been shifted to the more important things in life.
By his own admission he doesn’t have long left in the game. So to leave it with a record eighth promotion would be as good a retirement present as he could hope to get.